Thursday, February 24, 2011
This blog entry is my submission for the GreenFish and Outdoor Blogger Network Writing Prompt Giveaway
This Weeks Writing Prompt:
What does sustainable fishing mean to you?
I will answer this one from my perspective as a bass fisherman and bass fishing blogger in Minnesota. Basically we are blessed with an abundance of bass fishing opportunities in Minnesota. The key to sustainable bass fishing in this state is all about two things in my mind; Habitat and water quality. Because of the catch and release mindset of most bass fishermen and the fact that bass are regarded as lesser table fare than so many other abundant species in Minnesota bass harvest is not much of an issue.
Habitat issues in most cases have more to do with quality of a fishery in Minnesota, rather than a threat to the sustainability of a fishery. Bass are very adaptable fish. The better the habitat available the more bass thrive and the better the quality of the individual fishery. Even a fishery with poor habitat is likely to keep a sustainable population of bass because bass are hardy and prolific spawners.
Water quality is the biggest danger to the sustainability of bass fisheries in Minnesota. Probably the biggest water quality problem bass in this state face is winter oxygen depletion winter-kills. Right behind that is the leeching of fertilizers into fisheries that cause algae blooms and abundant plant growth that can create oxygen level problems for the bass. We are lucky in the fact that most lakes do to size and depth are shielded from these serious threats to bass sustainability. Many lakes that are susceptible to winter-kill now have aeration systems put in by the DNR, Sportsman's Clubs, and Lake Associations which serve to eliminate or partially mitigate against winter kill problems.
I am lucky, bass fishing, Minnesota, and sustainability go hand in hand very well.
What fishing practices do you engage in that help fisheries?
I engage in selective harvest when I fish and the truth is I don't keep a whole lot of fish mainly because I'm catch and release fishing for bass 85% of the time.
Any other thoughts you might have on this subject? Yes, but I'm tired and the deadline for this writing prompt is noon today, so I'll leave this for another time.